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November 28, 2017

Republicans Refuse NAACP Witness for Domestic Terrorism Hearing (Updated)

(WASHINGTON) – Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, sent the below letter to Committee Chairman Michael McCaul protesting his exclusion of the NAACP from a full Committee hearing Thursday on homeland threats and domestic terrorism:

I write regarding our Full Committee hearing entitled "Worldwide Threats: Keeping America Secure in the New Age of Terror" scheduled for November 30, 2017. As you know, I have requested that representatives from the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) be invited to testify at the hearing to share their perspectives on the disturbing rise of domestic terrorism.

I am greatly disappointed that, to date, you have not honored this longstanding request and instead have issued an invitation only to SPLC. In the wake of incidents like the 2015 Charleston church shooting and the attack in Charlottesville earlier this year, all Members of the Committee could benefit from the NAACP's important testimony.

I would also point out that the Majority selected all three witnesses on the first panel and two of the three witnesses currently on the second panel with no input from or consultation with Democrats. Certainly, there is no Committee rule prohibiting the NAACP from being invited.  This Committee has a long history of bipartisanship on matters related to securing the homeland from terrorism. I hope you will consider this request with that in mind. 

On behalf of the Democratic Members of the Committee, I urge you to issue an invitation to NAACP for this hearing. Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Link to Letter

UPDATE 11/29/17: The NAACP has been invited to the November 30 full committee hearing

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Media contact: Adam Comis at (202) 225-9978